• WordNet 3.6
    • adj expedient serving to promote your interest "was merciful only when mercy was expedient"
    • adj expedient appropriate to a purpose; practical "in the circumstances it was expedient to express loyalty"
    • n expedient a means to an end; not necessarily a principled or ethical one
    • ***
Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
    • Expedient Hastening or forward; hence, tending to further or promote a proposed object; fit or proper under the circumstances; conducive to self-interest; desirable; advisable; advantageous; -- sometimes contradistinguished from right or principled. "It is expedient for you that I go away.""Nothing but the right can ever be expedient , since that can never be true expediency which would sacrifice a greater good to a less."
    • Expedient Means devised in an exigency; shift.
    • Expedient Quick; expeditious. "His marches are expedient to this town."
    • Expedient That which serves to promote or advance; suitable means to accomplish an end. "What sure expedient than shall Juno find,
      To calm her fears and ease her boding mind?"
    • ***
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • expedient Serving to promote or urge forward; quick; expeditious.
    • expedient Direct; without deviation or unnecessary delay.
    • expedient Tending to promote some proposed or desired object; fit or suitable for the purpose; proper under the circumstances; advisable.
    • expedient Conducive or tending to present advantage or self-interest.
    • expedient Synonyms and Advisable, desirable, advantageous, profitable, useful, best, wise.
    • n expedient That which serves to promote or advance a desired result; any means which may be employed to accomplish an end.
    • n expedient Means devised or employed in an exigency; a shift; a device.
    • n expedient Synonyms Expedient, Resource, Resort, Contrivance, Device, Shift. Expedient, contrivance, and device indicate artificial means of escape from difficulty or embarrassment; resource indicates natural means or something possessed; resort and shift may indicate either. A shift is a temporary, poor, or desperate expedient. When one's resources begin to fail, one has recourse to contrivances, expedients, etc., and finally to almost any shift. Resort is less often applied to the thing resorted to than to the act of resorting. Contrivance and device suggest most of ingenuity.
    • ***
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
    • adj Expedient eks-pē′di-ent suitable: advisable:
    • n Expedient that which serves to promote: means suitable to an end: contrivance
    • adj Expedient eks-pē′di-ent (Shak.) hasty
    • ***


  • James Russell Lowell
    “Compromise makes a good umbrella, but a poor roof; it is temporary expedient, often wise in party politics, almost sure to be unwise ;in statesmanship.”
  • Theodore Roosevelt
    “No man is justified in doing evil on the ground of expediency.”
  • Horace
    “A good and faithful judge ever prefers the honorable to the expedient.”
  • Quentin Crisp
    “The law is simply expediency wearing a long white dress.”
  • Henry David Thoreau
    “The lawyer's truth is not Truth, but consistency or a consistent expediency.”
  • Edmund Burke
    “The true danger is when liberty is nibbled away, for expedience, and by parts.”


Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
L. expediens, -entis, p. pr. of expedire, to be expedient, release, extricate: cf. F. expédient,. See Expedite
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
L. expediens, -entis, pr.p. of expedīre.


In literature:

Omai's Expedient to prevent their being detained.
"A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels, Vol. 15 (of 18)" by Robert Kerr
He could devise no expedient.
"Hatchie, the Guardian Slave; or, The Heiress of Bellevue" by Warren T. Ashton
Finance and the army were brought under Parliamentary control by the simple expedient of making its annual summons essential.
"Political Thought in England from Locke to Bentham" by Harold J. Laski
The self-defensive expedient served its purpose admirably.
"The Taming of Red Butte Western" by Francis Lynde
She knew none of the expedients which seemed to be at his command.
"The Wings of the Morning" by Louis Tracy
He is still in hope, and the expedient which he finds.
"The Works of John Dryden, Volume XVI. (of 18)" by John Dryden
After all, the family is an early expedient and in many ways irrational.
"The Life of Reason" by George Santayana
To be obscure, abrupt, and dark, was the best expedient.
"A Dialogue Concerning Oratory, Or The Causes Of Corrupt Eloquence" by Cornelius Tacitus
But the occasions on which such expedients can be used at sea are far rarer than on land.
"Some Principles of Maritime Strategy" by Julian Stafford Corbett
But these they now thought it expedient to withhold from him.
"A Book of the Play" by Dutton Cook

In poetry:

Peter saw expedience
Was the way of common sense;
Sitting quiet on the down
Grabbed the princess and the crown.
"Peter" by Laura Benet
Expedients fail'd that brought relief before,
In vain his alms gave comfort to the poor,
Give what he would, to him the comfort came no
"Tale XIV" by George Crabbe
Christ is with ev'ry useful gift replete,
Which for the souls of sinful men is meet —
In Christ alone is found each saving grace,
Expedient to preserve a wretched race.
"Christ Is All In All" by Rees Prichard
If thou shalt ask for ought, in Jesus' name,
Thou either, what thou askest, shalt obtain,
(So thou dost earnestly entreat the same)
Or, what is more expedient, thou shalt gain.
"Concerning Prayer, And Its Proper Requisites" by Rees Prichard
Because your sinful Karma has created
Dense blindness and impenetrable obstruction,
You cannot understand the meaning
Of Ultimate Truth.
Listen, therefore, to the Expedient Truth.
"The Song Of Perfect Assurance (To The Demons)" by Jetsun Milarepa
Pursue the search, and you will find
Good sense and knowledge of mankind
To be at least expedient,
And, after summing all the rest,
Religion ruling in the breast
A principal ingredient.
"Friendship" by William Cowper

In news:

Expediency undermines California governance.
The president has shown he's a fan of beer — and it's the most politically expedient, "everyman" beverage a candidate can drink.
Thus, Muslim extremists managed, through the expedient of riot and rampage, to bring attention to the very thing they loathe, a thing which, but for their help, would have been little noticed.
In a statement issued on his behalf by the Marine General Counsel, Allen also said he wants to resolve the matter in an expedient fashion.
The guest envelopes with gratitude and expedient service.
Don't let expediency get in way of principles, even funky ones.
Politically expedient and disturbingly inaccurate .
Procrastination, expedience and piecemeal- ism don't lead to building a great city.
Truth is that no-tax pldge is no longer politically expedient.
According to Mayor Sam Jones, "Everybody, black or white, should be able to see past political expediency to do what is best for the city".
Tax pledge no longer expedient.
All Blogs Talking Politics Expedient Romney photo op of the week.
Words like acceptable, expedient, popular , easy and safe come to mind.
But Heyman urges parents to think through the issues and consider alternatives before resorting to the expedient prevarication .
The outcome of the 2012 presidential election reinforces the fact that what America needs the most is not a political movement driven by expediency and agendas of man but a prophetic movement driven by the impetus of the cross.

In science:

To do this, it is expedient to turn to the lattice Green function G (X, z) associated with the distribution function of the end-point of the PGRW tra jectories.
Random walk generated by random permutations of {1,2,3, ..., n+1}
To do this, it is expedient to define first some sort of an ”evolution” equation for Pl (Y ).
Random walk generated by random permutations of {1,2,3, ..., n+1}
Therefore it is expedient to consider influence on Ref of the one-axis deformations of a stretching.
Influence of the finite deformations changing the symmetry of an initial lattice on a generation of atoms displacements waves by non-equilibrium electrons
Briefly, the targets were scheduled as SNAPSHOT exposures, which meant that the actual observations were selected on the basis of expediency for the telescope scheduling system, and on the availability of visits with suitable durations.
Hubble Space Telescope Images of Magellanic Cloud Planetary Nebulae
In may be expedient to illustrate this formal consideration on a particular example.
Random patterns generated by random permutations of natural numbers